The UFC 145: "Jones vs. Evans" main card going down in Atlanta, Georgia, tonight (Sat., April 21, 2012) featured a featherweight fracas showcasing Mark Hominick's quest to return to form against the unheralded Hawaiian Eddie Yagin.
After rising through the ranks of the 145-pound division, Hominick was systemically destroyed by Jose Aldo. In his next bout, he was knocked out clean in just seven seconds by Chan Sung Jung. Could he get back on the hog against Yagin?
In short, no. At least not when you look at his loss column. That's because Yagin was awarded a split decision victory after three-rounds of hotly contested action thanks mostly to two knockdowns in the first two frames.
That's three losses in a row for "The Machine."
No different than the last time we saw him, Hominick came rushing out to take the center of the cage. This time, though, he did so without reckless abandon. Last time it cost him a knockout loss and this time he was far more measured.
Still, Yagin was landing clean punches far too often and before long, he had the Canadian rocked and on the floor. It looked like this one was over, too, but Hominick somehow managed to survive the ensuing onslaught to get back to his feet and continue on.
Hominick even scored a few nice punches of his own to close the round. But he went back to his corner with two busted up eyes and the mark of a man who's taken far too many shots in just five minutes of fighting.
Once again, it didn't take too long into the second round for Yagin to land another hard shot that had Hominick falling backwards. No matter the outcome, at this point it was clear that Hominick simply isn't the same fighter he was before running up against UFC Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo.
"The Machine" managed to get back to his feet again, though, and repeated the close of the first round. He got off a few punches and dealt enough damage to see Yagin bleeding out of his face.
After two rounds, Yagin was clearly tired as all hell. And his nose was nasty.
Nonetheless, the final round came and both men came out like it was the opening frame and they were ready to get busy. Hominick was the more technical of the two, landing cleaner punches and with more volume. Yagin was simply head hunting, swinging for the fences in the hopes of connecting on that home run hit.
As Joe Rogan described it, "it's the difference between someone who gets a lot of base hits and someone who's trying to knock out windows."
The problem with Hominick's strategy was he needed the home run, seeing as he was already likely down two rounds to zero. He showed brief flashes towards the end but it was too little, too late.
Three losses in a row for the former title contender. What to do now?
Remember, too, to check out MMAmania.com's live ongoing round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the UFC 145 fight card by clicking here.